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Violent Interruption of Morning Shopping Leaves 2 Dead

Suspect carries out knife attack in town near Lyon, France, wounding others
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 4, 2020 8:45 AM CDT

(Newser) – A man wielding a knife attacked residents venturing out to shop in a town under lockdown south of the French city of Lyon Saturday, killing two people and wounding others, prosecutors say. The anti-terrorism prosecutor’s office tells the AP that the attack took place at 11am in a commercial area in Romans-sur-Isere. The alleged attacker was arrested by police nearby, shortly after the attack. Prosecutors didn't identify him. They say he had no documents but claimed to be Sudanese and to have been born in 1987. Prosecutors say other people were also wounded but couldn’t confirm French media reports that there were seven other casualties, of whom three are in critical condition. They also didn't confirm reports that the man had shouted "Allahu akbar" ("God is great") as he carried out the attack.

The office said it's evaluating whether the attack was motivated by terrorism, but it notes it hasn't launched any formal proceedings to treat it as such. Like the rest of France, the town's residents are on coronavirus-linked lockdown. The victims were carrying out their weekend food shopping, the office said. Media reported the knifeman first attacked a Romanian resident who'd just left his home for his daily walk—slitting his throat in front of his girlfriend and son. Following that, they reported, the assailant entered a tobacco shop, stabbed the tobacconist and two customers, and then went into the local butcher's shop. He grabbed another knife and attacked a client with the blunt end before entering a supermarket. Some shoppers took refuge in a nearby bakery. There have been a number of knife attacks in France in recent months.

(Read more France stories.)

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